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Recommendations for a new electric guitar

PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
Taking some suggestions for a new guitar:

I am in my late 40s and have fooled around with the guitar for many years. This year, I have spent more time playing at home and finally feel like I've broken through a wall to where I'm actually making songs instead of noise  :) My current electric is a Harmony guitar I bought some 30 years ago (with a junky old amp). I've been playing more on an acoustic in recent time but I want to go back to electric. I'm not looking to play in a band, just wanting to have some fun.

Any suggestions on a basic guitar that's decent but also under, say $700?  Thanks for any input!

Comments

  • Gern BlanstenGern Blansten Your Mom'sPosts: 11,326
    edited October 2020
    https://www.sweetwater.com/c590--Solidbody_Guitars?params=eyJmYWNldCI6eyJQcmljZSBSYW5nZSI6WyIkNTAwIHRvICQ3NTAiXX19

    Pretty good selection here in that price range.  I would suggest a Fender Strat...

    And Sweetwater is a solid company to order from if you end up going that route.
    Remember the Thomas Nine!! (10/02/2018)

    1998: Noblesville; 2003: Noblesville; 2009: EV Nashville, Chicago, Chicago
    2010: St Louis, Columbus, Noblesville; 2011: EV Chicago, East Troy, East Troy
    2013: London ON, Chicago; 2014: Cincy, St Louis, Moline (NO CODE)
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  • eboweddieeboweddie Posts: 812
    Fender 72 telecaster custom 
    Beauty.  

    i wish i wish i wish i wish, i guess it never stops
  • mfc2006mfc2006 PDX--->KCPosts: 33,322
    Build one! I built one that I ordered from The Fretwire and it was a blast. I went with the Tele Deluxe kit and can’t wait to build another one.
    I LOVE MUSIC.
    www.cluthelee.com
    www.cluthe.com
  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    https://www.sweetwater.com/c590--Solidbody_Guitars?params=eyJmYWNldCI6eyJQcmljZSBSYW5nZSI6WyIkNTAwIHRvICQ3NTAiXX19

    Pretty good selection here in that price range.  I would suggest a Fender Strat...

    And Sweetwater is a solid company to order from if you end up going that route.

    Thanks for sending the link - I'll poke around the company site!
  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    Fender seems to be the consensus brand choice from what I've heard here as well as some other music friends.

  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    mfc2006 said:
    Build one! I built one that I ordered from The Fretwire and it was a blast. I went with the Tele Deluxe kit and can’t wait to build another one.
    I saw a couple of kits when I was browsing a site and it certainly looked tempting!
  • Gern BlanstenGern Blansten Your Mom'sPosts: 11,326
    PJ1973 said:
    Fender seems to be the consensus brand choice from what I've heard here as well as some other music friends.

    You can't go wrong with Fender
    Remember the Thomas Nine!! (10/02/2018)

    1998: Noblesville; 2003: Noblesville; 2009: EV Nashville, Chicago, Chicago
    2010: St Louis, Columbus, Noblesville; 2011: EV Chicago, East Troy, East Troy
    2013: London ON, Chicago; 2014: Cincy, St Louis, Moline (NO CODE)
    2016: Lexington, Wrigley #1; 2018: Wrigley #1, Wrigley #2, Boston #1, Boston #2
    2020: Oakland1, Oakland2
  • dudemandudeman Posts: 2,430
    Fender is definitely a solid choice. Resale value will always be there and the Mexican made Player Series are good to go right out of the box. Right in your price range. 

    I definitely recommend Sweetwater if you have to buy online. They do their own QC and setups on the guitars they sell. Elderly Instruments does too. If you have a local music store, supporting them would be good and you'll get to check out the guitar before you buy it.
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
  • pjpjpaulpjpjpaul Posts: 1,059
    Play before you buy. You never know, you may prefer the neck, electronics, or feel of a cheaper guitar to one that 1,000 people tell you is better and costs twice as much. It really comes down to personal preference. Also keep in mind it is easier to make certain mods on Fenders than several of the other big name brands. Case in point- i just took the neck off my American Professional Tele because I didn't like the feel of the rosewood fretboard and I installed the maple neck off my old 1996 Mexican strat and there were no issues at all after setup. Throw some locking tuners on whatever you get to help with tuning stability as well. 
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  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    I think where I'm taking this is going to take some time and try a bunch. I figure I had my last guitar for so long and it serves a good purpose - no point in rushing to get another one until I've had a chance to sit and play a few. Fortunately, I have two local music stores around me and a Guitar Center and Sam Ash, so I can get hands on experience. But good to know the direction people have been sending me. I do think I need a better amp than what I've been using so far. I'll be looking through the upcoming holidays so I may have more questions down the road!
  • mfc2006mfc2006 PDX--->KCPosts: 33,322
    PJ1973 said:
    I think where I'm taking this is going to take some time and try a bunch. I figure I had my last guitar for so long and it serves a good purpose - no point in rushing to get another one until I've had a chance to sit and play a few. Fortunately, I have two local music stores around me and a Guitar Center and Sam Ash, so I can get hands on experience. But good to know the direction people have been sending me. I do think I need a better amp than what I've been using so far. I'll be looking through the upcoming holidays so I may have more questions down the road!
    Good idea. When I bought my Gretsch Electromatic, I played it (along with several others) in shops for a couple of years here and there until I knew it was the one for me. Enjoy the hunt/search!
    I LOVE MUSIC.
    www.cluthelee.com
    www.cluthe.com
  • dankinddankind I am not your foot. Posts: 16,607
    mfc2006 said:
    PJ1973 said:
    I think where I'm taking this is going to take some time and try a bunch. I figure I had my last guitar for so long and it serves a good purpose - no point in rushing to get another one until I've had a chance to sit and play a few. Fortunately, I have two local music stores around me and a Guitar Center and Sam Ash, so I can get hands on experience. But good to know the direction people have been sending me. I do think I need a better amp than what I've been using so far. I'll be looking through the upcoming holidays so I may have more questions down the road!
    Good idea. When I bought my Gretsch Electromatic, I played it (along with several others) in shops for a couple of years here and there until I knew it was the one for me. Enjoy the hunt/search!
    If you’re just going to play around the house, you don’t need to go too crazy with an amp. 
    I SAW PEARL JAM
  • brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain.Posts: 33,262
    Two thoughts here:
    1. If you can (as pjpjpaul said above) play before you buy.
    2. Be careful what you wish for.

    Re 1.  When I wanted a less expensive Martin acoustic that I would feel more comfortable taking out of the house, I went to Nicholson's Music in Folsom and played both of the DX1R's they had.  They looked exactly alike.  The first one just didn't feel or sound right.  The second one felt good right away and after playing it for about a half an hour I knew it was the one.  It has remained one of my favorites.

    Re 2.  I always love the way Paul Westerberg made his '72 Fender Thinline semi-hollowbody Telecaster with dual Humbuckers sound and used to tell my family and friends that was THE guitar I wanted.  So when my god-children's grandmother passed away and they inherited some money, they bought me that very guitar!  Well, I had never actually played one and when that guitar came into my possession, I was thrilled!  But when I got it home and started playing it, there was no chemistry there.  That guitar looks cool on my wall, but that's about it.  (I did play a standard tele once though many years ago that felt terrific- I wish I had bought that one!  I'm still seeking the right tele.)  So my point is, it's best to try some different things out.  Don't be wowed by what Westerberg or Mike or Stone or whoever plays.  Be wowed by the guitar that feels and sounds good to you!
    “In all human affairs there are efforts, and there are results, and the strength of the effort is the measure of the result.”
    -James Allen










  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    Good advice for me, especially number 2. I'm totally one of those people that would think, Mike plays a Strat, I want that, or I want a Gibson because Jimmy Page plays one. =) But yeah, then you've spent a lot of money and it doesn't feel as good to you as you thought it would.
  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    Anyone have comments about Paul Reed Smith guitars? There are a couple of old threads on this board but nothing in the past five or six years. I was taking a look at a S-2 Standard 22 used model. It had the right feel for me but I'm not as familiar with it. I now see it with a lot of jam band-y type groups. Local friends seem to like the brand but always looking for input.
  • dudemandudeman Posts: 2,430
    edited October 2020
    PJ1973 said:
    Anyone have comments about Paul Reed Smith guitars? There are a couple of old threads on this board but nothing in the past five or six years. I was taking a look at a S-2 Standard 22 used model. It had the right feel for me but I'm not as familiar with it. I now see it with a lot of jam band-y type groups. Local friends seem to like the brand but always looking for input.
    Nice, well built guitars with excellent fit and finish typically. The high end PRS are truly world class works of art. S2 is a step down from the top end but nicer than the imported SE line. S2s would likely serve many working guitarists well both in tone and build quality. 

    Conceptually, they began by trying to blend the desirable characteristics of both Fender and Gibson guitars. (The standard scale length is in between the two.) Consequently, they really have a unique house sound. If you're looking for a guitar that sounds like a classic Les Paul, Strat or Tele that you recognize from countless recordings, PRS might not get you there. They sound terrific though if you like the "PRS sound". Most notable players I am aware of with endorsements or signature models play heavy music with lots of gain and effects. John Mayer and Carlos Santana are two exceptions. 

    Best thing to do would be to play a few models if you can and see how you like them. 

    Have you been able to play the one you're looking at through your own rig?
    Post edited by dudeman on
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    Not yet, but I am looking at a new amp as well - but I'm looking at something basic for that, I don't need to be fancy there.

    I played a Gretch today after seeing MFC2006's post last week and it had a good feel to it. Also tried a D'Angelico hollow body and it was way too big for me. But this has been fun trying all these different brands and styles.
  • eboweddieeboweddie Posts: 812
    I'm after getting a reverend Pete anderson Eastsider t. It's an absolute beauty.  

    i wish i wish i wish i wish, i guess it never stops
  • mfc2006mfc2006 PDX--->KCPosts: 33,322
    PJ1973 said:
    Not yet, but I am looking at a new amp as well - but I'm looking at something basic for that, I don't need to be fancy there.

    I played a Gretch today after seeing MFC2006's post last week and it had a good feel to it. Also tried a D'Angelico hollow body and it was way too big for me. But this has been fun trying all these different brands and styles.
    Nice! Which Gretsch model did you play?
    I LOVE MUSIC.
    www.cluthelee.com
    www.cluthe.com
  • static111static111 Posts: 2,051
    eboweddie said:
    I'm after getting a reverend Pete anderson Eastsider t. It's an absolute beauty.  
    I was just going to recommend Reverend guitars.   Amazing guitars at a great price point...my favorite is the Jetstream 390.  Sometimes you can find them used on eBay or Reverb for a couple hundred bucks. Pro level guitars at entry level prices imo.
  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    mfc2006 said:
    PJ1973 said:
    Not yet, but I am looking at a new amp as well - but I'm looking at something basic for that, I don't need to be fancy there.

    I played a Gretch today after seeing MFC2006's post last week and it had a good feel to it. Also tried a D'Angelico hollow body and it was way too big for me. But this has been fun trying all these different brands and styles.
    Nice! Which Gretsch model did you play?
    The Streamliner, I think? 
  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    edited October 2020
    Found my guitar!!! This will be a good one for a beginner, I think. Just need a small loan  :)

    Post edited by PJ1973 on
  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    Finally got my guitar and got a Stratocaster. (no not the $10k one). After trying so many, I decided the one that I've wanted for so many years was the one that in fact felt good to play. Now to actually learn how to play something decent on it  =)
  • dudemandudeman Posts: 2,430
    Congrats! The newer Player Series are really impressive. Much nicer than the MIM Standard Series. Fender has upped their QC lately and it shows. 

    Great looking Strat!
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
  • mfc2006mfc2006 PDX--->KCPosts: 33,322
    Awesome!!! Enjoy it!
    I LOVE MUSIC.
    www.cluthelee.com
    www.cluthe.com
  • PJ1973PJ1973 Winston-Salem, NCPosts: 265
    Thanks everyone. I appreciate everyone's input and thoughts. Feel I know a lot more about guitars now than I did three weeks ago!
  • mfc2006mfc2006 PDX--->KCPosts: 33,322
    PJ1973 said:
    Thanks everyone. I appreciate everyone's input and thoughts. Feel I know a lot more about guitars now than I did three weeks ago!
    That’s always a good thing! And it’s always fun to try a bunch of random ones. You picked a winner for sure!
    I LOVE MUSIC.
    www.cluthelee.com
    www.cluthe.com
  • bootlegger10bootlegger10 Posts: 13,329
    edited November 2020
    dudeman said:
    Fender is definitely a solid choice. Resale value will always be there and the Mexican made Player Series are good to go right out of the box. Right in your price range. 

    I definitely recommend Sweetwater if you have to buy online. They do their own QC and setups on the guitars they sell. Elderly Instruments does too. If you have a local music store, supporting them would be good and you'll get to check out the guitar before you buy it.
    I just bought a 1950's Les Paul Standard P90's Gold Top from Sweetwater.   Super stoked.  The guitar inventory around Indy sucks right now so was okay taking a chance with Sweetwater.   Honestly, I don't have the time or the ear to sit around and try out a bunch of the same guitar model and try to hear the difference.  I'm sure it will be great. 
  • dudemandudeman Posts: 2,430
    dudeman said:
    Fender is definitely a solid choice. Resale value will always be there and the Mexican made Player Series are good to go right out of the box. Right in your price range. 

    I definitely recommend Sweetwater if you have to buy online. They do their own QC and setups on the guitars they sell. Elderly Instruments does too. If you have a local music store, supporting them would be good and you'll get to check out the guitar before you buy it.
    I just bought a 1950's Les Paul Standard P90's Gold Top from Sweetwater.   Super stoked.  The guitar inventory around Indy sucks right now so was okay taking a chance with Sweetwater.   Honestly, I don't have the time or the ear to sit around and try out a bunch of the same guitar model and try to hear the difference.  I'm sure it will be great. 
    Nice! You have excellent taste in guitars. Congrats on the new one!
    If hope can grow from dirt like me, it can be done. - EV
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